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Heroes to replace gov’t execs in office photos

The directive is contained in Memorandum Circular No. 25 signed by Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea last Sept. 15. Malacañang Photo Bureau/King Rodriguez, File

MANILA, Philippines — Malacañang has ordered all government offices to display photos or paintings of national heroes instead of elected and appointed officials.

The directive is contained in Memorandum Circular No. 25 signed by Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea last Sept. 15. 

The order was issued to strengthen the people’s nationalism, love of country and respect for heroes and raise “social consciousness and patriotism,” Medialdea said. 

The order covers government agencies and instrumentalities, including state-run or controlled firms, state universities and colleges and public schools.

The memorandum contained a list of Philippine heroes identified by the National Historical Commission of the Philippines.

The national heroes on the list are Jose Rizal, Andres Bonifacio, Emilio Aguinaldo, Apolinario Mabini, Marcelo del Pilar, Juan Luna, Melchora Aquino, Gabriela Silang, Lapu-Lapu, F. Jose Burgos, Fr. Mariano Gomez, Fr. Jacinto Zamora, Emilio Jacinto and Jose Abad Santos.

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Last July, Duterte described as “silly” the displaying of his photo and those of other incumbent officials in government offices. 

“I intend to also issue a decree, ipatanggal ko iyong mga litrato namin (I will have our photos removed),” the President said in an interview in Malacañang last July 18.

“Nabuang man iyong mga ganoon na tao (These people are silly). Put your family photos in your living room,” he added.

Duterte also barred the display of his photo when he was mayor of Davao City.

He has instructed state agencies not to use “your excellency” when addressing him in official communications, events or materials.

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